Six-person class for athletics signing day at Sierra Canyon
The Sierra Canyon school and athletics department is proud to announce the following early-signing period class for the 2022-2023 school year.
Congratulations are in order for girls basketball player Crystal Wang, baseball players Kehden Hettiger and Grant Werdesheim, and girls volleyball players Olivia Babcock, Jaida Sione and Ava Hewitt-Smith.
Wang has chosen Northwestern to continue her academic and athletic career. Wang has been a valuable part of the Trailblazers success, helping the team to an Open Division state championship in 2022.
“I chose Northwestern because I want to be challenged athletically and academically,” Wang said. “It is one of the top universities in the world and in one of the top conferences, the Big Ten. Best of all, the coaching staff believes in my ability to contribute. I’m honored to attend starting next fall.
Sierra Canyon head coach Alicia Komaki couldn’t be more proud or happier.
“Crystal has impressed me with her independence and ability to handle the rigor of both Sierra Canyon elite academics and athletics commitment,” Komaki said. “It’s only fitting that she continues her career at one of the top universities in the country. I am so proud of her and am inspired by her resilience, overcoming challenges with English being her second language.”
Hettiger is headed to Oregon and is expected to compete for playing time as a catcher and third baseman.
“I told them I’ll play anywhere.” Hettige said. “Anything to get me on the field and help the team.”
Hettiger has been a Ducks fan since he was a little boy.
“I love the neon colors,” Hettiger said. “I had a neon hoodie when I was little and fell in love with Oregon. It was like a dream come true when they came calling. I am just really thankful for this opportunity to play in college. I have wanted this for a long time.”
Hettiger is a top hitter and projects to reach his peak as he enters his 20’s. Hettiger has a great approach at the plate and is a developing power hitter.
Grant Werdesheim is a centerfielder headed to Brown in the Ivy League.
“This has been a lifelong dream to play at the collegiate level,” Werdesheim said. “Brown values academics and athletics. I wanted to get the best possible education while also playing baseball. I really just got a great feeling on campus when I visited and developed a close relationship with the head coach.”
Babcock is headed to Pittsburgh, Sione to Cornell and Hewitt-Smith to Clemson.
Babcock is a powerful outside hitter that led the Trailblazers in kills this past season. Babcock also was instrumental in helping Sierra Canyon capture its first ever Division 1 championship with a sweep against Mira Costa Saturday at Cerritos College.
Sione formed a 1-2 punch with Babcock sending home plenty of kills of her own from the left side. Hewitt-Smith was a force in the middle blocking balls back and scoring points with a quick right arm.
“These three girls have worked extremely hard for the opportunity to play at the next level,” Sierra Canyon coach Stefanie Wigfall said. “It’s exciting to see them move on. They all played such a big part in the team’s success. I have no doubt they all will contribute in a positive way next year. All three have leadership skills and work ethic that will translate to the next level.”